Jan 31, 2020
How vehicle OEMs are being left behind logistics companies, in the race to electrification

This week saw the announcement by UPS of their investment in and order of 10,000 Arrival electric vans.

We find ourselves at a tipping point for the delivery and logistics sector servicing inner cities and it is the logistics firms that have stepped up to the plate, rather than the OEM vehicle providers.

 

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DHL went first with its early investment in Street Scooter and subsequent 100% ownership

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Amazon was next with investment in Rivian and the placement of a market-changing order of 100,000 vehicles

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Followed by UPS and its announcement yesterday of its commitment to UK firm, Arrival and a further substantial vehicle order

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How will FEDEX, and others respond?

But, with the giants of the logistics world forging ahead with solutions, the companies you might expect to be leading the charge – the CV and truck manufacturers are being left behind.

While there is undoubtedly work going on behind the scenes at OEM development facilities, the vast majority of OEMs have no immediate response to the increasingly urgent need for electrification. If anything, manufacturers should be getting concerned at the sheer number of vehicles being ordered from new businesses and start-ups like Arrival.

And, if they have no solution to offer in the immediate future, they should be looking to partner with a company that does – much in the way that Hyundai and Kia have done with their investment in Arrival.

The delivery giants often talk about the three elements of the delivery process that present the biggest challenge in terms of finding a cleaner or zero-emission solution: long haul to depot, depot to consolidation centre, and last mile.

Of these, last mile electrification has had the lions’ share of attention in recent months because of the accelerating need to reduce cost and comply with incoming legislation around air quality (both PM and GHG), congestion and urban noise pollution.

Perhaps part of the reason there is less than expected coming from commercial vehicle makers is the challenge to address the three key duty cycles, and the heavier weight ranges and not just last mile.

And that’s where Tevva comes in. Our sole focus on the electrification of commercial vehicle sector makes sense because:

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Our solution flexibly addresses more parts of the delivery scenario, and more weight ranges, with vehicles able to handle a wide variety of payloads, duty-cycles and ranges

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Our technology has already been successfully integrated on to three OEM platforms, with many more eminently and immediately possible

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Tevva-enabled eTrucks are real and in service right now, displacing more diesel miles every day and proving the safety, durability and reliability of our advanced technologies

We are seeing a clear tipping point in the logistics industry with the big operators preparing to address last mile electrification to address climate goals and in the face of tightening policy and the need for cost reduction. However, it is also time for vehicle OEM’s to seize the moment and partner for electrification, to accelerate their product offerings which will need to comply with the same tight restrictions in very short order.  Bear in mind that vehicles leased or purchased in only 2 or 3 years time will need to be compliant with the regulations in place at the end of this decade – which as we all know can only mean one thing..

Robin Mackie

CEO, Tevva Motors Ltd

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